Golden Week holiday exodus begins at airports, train stations


The Golden Week exodus began Saturday with airports and train stations packed with thousands of holidaymakers taking advantage of a 9-day break.

Narita Airport estimated the number of people heading overseas will rise 16.3% from 2011 to 597,800. Last year, fewer people traveled in the aftermath of the March 11 disaster.

On Saturday, the airport operator said 42,000 people are expected to depart, while the peak day for arrivals will be May 6, with 46,300 projected to fly in.

The most popular destinations this year are South Korea, Guam and Saipan, travel agents said.

Meanwhile, JR said shinkansens are fully booked for this weekend and from May 3-6.

Highway authorities expect traffic congestion to peak on May 3 (outbound from Tokyo) and on May 5 and May 6 (inbound).

However, a new 160-kilometer section of the Tomei Expressway that opened earlier this month is expected to ease traffic congestion between the Gotemba and Mikkabi junctions.

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But it's not a nine-day break is it, unless you take extra time off on Tuesday and Wednesday.

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Narita Airport estimated the number of people heading overseas will rise 16.3% from 2011 to 597,800.

Narita alone or nation wide? what are the figures from travel agencies? may be less than 2011.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I wonder how many companies allow their employees to take all 9 days.

I know a few software companies that don't even allow their workers to take the Golden Week break, so I can imagine that many other companies wouldn't allow their employees to rest that much. It's very difficult to take paid holidays here, and even more when you try to rest for more than a couple of days in a row.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Maria/Synbios: A surprising amount, it seems. I know more than 20 people who were given the nine days off (without them having to use paid holidays), which surprised me. Most people, though, still probably have to work the Tuesday and Wednesday, or use paid holiday. In any case, you won't see me using a shinkansen or waiting on an expressway somewhere in a 10 km traffic jam.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I'd rather chose my own holidays than have the state chose them for me.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

I'm glad I took the decision to just stay home and relax. The weather for Nara looks awful.

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i just came back from okinawa last week. a week there and nothing but rain or horribly hot. i think i will stay home this golden week.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

We had a great day out at Tama Zoo, hardly anyone there.

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I'm offering free tours of the Washington D.C./Baltimore area for anyone from Japan interested in the the U.S. Capital and older ports.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

free tours

yeah, right

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I don't know why next Tuesday and Wednesday are not holiday.It's not the Golden "Week". There are no people who are willing to go to school or office next Tuesday and Wednesday!

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I have 2 days of food, 5 movies, 2 books for a 120km bus ride to Fugi, I hope it will be enough.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

"golden week" just a perfect excuse for travel, hotels, oil companies to price gouge the gullible. lol

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Hope they don't come to Okinawa. Rain forecast every single day for GW.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

long vacation to all japanese :)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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